Korean Food - Seafood (Menu, Locations, Types)

Food in Korea | Harry

May 24, 2019

(All text is referenced from "Seafood" by Amos Farooqi)


Korean Food - Seafood



Seafood in Korea is very common, as the land is surrounded by sea. At Seoul, there is the famous Seafood Market at Noryangjin, but normally people will head to districts near the sea to try out the freshest seafood. Much like Japan, seafood is consumed either cooked or raw, but unlike Japan when eating raw, rather than eating seafood as a sushi, it is consumed more as a sashimi type.


1. Saeong-seon Gui



Saengseon gui translates as grilled fish. It is a simple way of cooking fish by grilling it on a pan or grill, slightly seasoned with salt or other spices. Now it is a common side dish enjoyed by the general public, but in the old days it was a symbol of wealth, as only a well off family could afford to put out saengseon gui as a side dish.


Where to eat?


- Finding saengsun gui is pretty easy since it’s a very popular appetizer for drinking sessions. However, there’s an alleyway in Dongdaemun known as Saengseon Gui Alley that’s home to a whole bunch of restaurants specializing in the dish. Prices vary depending on the type of fish, but it’s usually no more than 8,000 won for a meal set.



2. Jang-uh Gui




Jang-uh Gui is eel sprinkled with or coated in either a soy-based or chili paste based sauce and grilled on a pan or over charcoal. It’s high in nutrients and believed to be especially good for gaining energy and stamina. It’s also easy to cook at home, with many grocery stores selling special marinade for eel, although it might leave a lingering odor after you cook.

However, it’s also quite an expensive meal, with a single eel costing upwards of 30,000 won sometimes at restaurants.


Where to eat?


- There are jang-uh gui restaurants spread all over Seoul, but some famous ones are Wangja jang-uh (왕자장어) in Apgujeong, Suhyeon Minmul Jang-uh (수현민물장어) near Ttukseom station off Line 2, and Yeoui Minmul Jang-uh (여의민물장어) in Yeouido



3. Jogae Gui


Jogae gui is just assorted shellfish grilled over charcoal. You can eat this seafood fresh anywhere due to nearly every Korean city’s proximity to the sea. Restaurants will scoop live shellfish from a tank, usually in front of the store, and bring it right to your table.

Don’t forget to order jogae kalguksu also; noodle soup with even more shellfish.


Where to eat?


- There are a number of famous jogae gui restaurants located in Nonhyeon-dong, by Nonhyeon Station Exit 2 as well as Sinnonhyeon Station Exit 3. These restaurants open in the early evening and are usually open until the early hours of next morning. There are also plenty of jogae gui restaurants in coastal towns across Korea, closest ones to Seoul are Oi-do, and Incheon Wolmi-do.



4. Gejang


The famous nickname for gejang is rice thief, because a bowl of rice will just disappear when you eat it with gejang. The recipie is simple. Just marinate fresh raw crabs either in ganjang (soy sauce) or a chili powder based sauce. Female crabs with roe are preferred when making gejang, just like cheese is preferred on pizza.


Where to eat?


- There’s a famous Gejang Alley located by Sinsa Station Exit 4. It’s a cluster of restaurants specializing in various gejang dishes that are open 24 hours a day.



5. Haemuljjim


With three of its sides surrounded by sea, Korea is a peninsula where many different types of seafood are caught. Haemuljjim is a dish where you can taste all these different kinds of sea creatures on one plate.

It is a savoring dish cooked by braising fresh seafood in a stimulating spicy sauce with bean sprouts and noodles. It is the ultimate dish for spicy seafood lovers.


Where to eat?


- There’s a famous street that specializes in haemuljjim and a similar dish known as agujjim (which uses a single type of fish known as the blackmouth angler rather than a variety of seafood) in Nagwon-dong, right next to Jongno 3-ga station outside Exit 5. They usually open right before lunch and don’t close until after midnight.



6. Hwe


Korean raw fish, ‘hwe’, is not a Japanese food. Koreans have also enjoyed raw fish since old times. In fact those who have tried hwe will understand that it is a completely different dish compared sashimi.

When you order hwe in Korea, fresh fish straight out from the tank is served, whereas Japanese like to age the fish before eating. Also Koreans like to eat hwe with many other side dishes or make it into a lettuce rap (ssam)


Where to eat?


- Noryangjin Market is your best option for the best hwe in Seoul, with plenty of vendors selling it and slicing it up on demand. It’s also incredibly easy to find in any coastal town, with tons of restaurants serving hwe usually lined up by the seaside.



7. Jjukkumi Bokum


Many people believe that its baby octopus, but the jjukkumi used in jjukkumi bokum is actually just a species of octopus that’s very small. This very spicy but mouth-watering dish is made by marinating jjukkumi in gochujang sauce (Korean red chilli paste) then grilling it on a pan mixed with chopped onions and maybe bean sprouts.

Many restaurants will have an option of adding samgyeopsal (pork belly) to the dish to give it an even more incredible and interesting taste.


Where to eat?


- There’s a famous alleyway with a large number of jjukkumi restaurants line up together known as Yongdu-dong Jjukkumi Alley, near Jegi Station Exit 6. These restaurants are usually open a little before lunch time and close around 10:30pm.





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